Have you started to notice the big tubs of quality street in the supermarkets? The catchy jingles on the radio? The mouth-watering food adverts on the tv? This can mean only one thing – Christmas is coming! Our MD Robert met Father Christmas whilst out shopping last week!
Yes, I know what you’re thinking. For most people this early on Christmas is not even a thought, some people will not even consider thinking about it until as late as December but with an office party to plan, can you afford to leave it that late? Here’s our top tips for organising your office Christmas party:
Start planning early – It might sound crazy to you, but the most organised people start to plan and book their annual Christmas party in January. This ensures that you get the date and venue that you want! Of course, you will find venues will still have availability as the year goes on but if you want a Thursday or Friday in December you need to get in early!
Venue choice – Now this can be a daunting task, with so many venues not just in London but in towns and cities up and down the country, it can be a huge task to find the right venue for you! The main question to ask is what do you want from your Christmas party? Perhaps email around the office with a survey to find out what kind of vibe you are looking for this year.
Outline a clear budget – Obviously this is important, we are all constantly looking for some added value or better rates, so when it comes to your budget, know what you have to work with! Now most Christmas parties are sold as a package, so know what is and isn’t included! Do you need a DJ and dancefloor? Do you need a three-hour all-inclusive drinks package? Make sure that know what you’re getting!
Top Tip: Did you know that HMRC provides limited tax relief against the cost of holding staff events – be it one Christmas party, or a number of smaller events throughout the year – as long as the cost does not exceed £150.00, including VAT, per person.
Private or joiner party – This decision is typically made for you depending on your budget and the size of your party. If you are a small team with a low budget looking for a Thursday or Friday night, a joiner party is probably the best thing for you. Even if you have the budget to hire the whole space for a private party, if you are a small team you might have more fun at a joiner party as there might be a better atmosphere with more people. If you are a big team and can fill out the space, then a private party would be the right option for you. Again, it all comes down you what you’re looking for!
Ask for advice – It can be a daunting task to plan the office Christmas party. If you need help, just ask! Here at The Conference People we’ve been finding the perfect venues for Christmas parties since 1986, this will include negotiating the very best deal for you. Just let us know what you’re looking for and we’ll find it for you and make sure that you have the best party ever!
Summary of things to think about
- Feedback and review last year’s party
- Agree and set date and times
- Establish the budget, will guests contribute towards the cost
- Find the venue – location – unique – special – best value
- Is there to be a theme
- Agree Food and Beverage arrangements – sit down meal – buffet – cocktails
- Entertainment – band – DJ – cabaret
- Invite everyone!
And finally…. Our last piece of advice is to enjoy it! After all, it is Christmas and I’m sure you’ve worked hard all year so put your dancing shoes on, eat too many mince pies, drink as much mulled wine as you can and be merry!